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Bye Borders, I Will Miss You!

Borders Book Store
Borders - (Image via Wikipedia)

 

Did the Amazon technological marvel called “Kindle” kill the book store behemoth Borders?  Borders said that is exactly what has happened, I wonder if Barnes and Noble is next?  I’m sad to say that 10,700 Border employees are now out of a job!

In my previous blog entry called “Is Technology A Job Killer?” I basically summarize how we are going to lose more and more jobs as a result of technology.  But perhaps my statement isn’t really that amazing, perhaps we’ve been losing more and more jobs for a long time now and we just didn’t realize it.

Reading my above statement and previous blog post, you might think that I’m anti-technology, but that’s not true!  In fact, technology is what puts food on my table at home.  I’ve seen the Kindle and it’s pretty cool.  As cool as it is, I still prefer hard bound books, but I definitely see the value in a kindle.

 

My History With Borders

Okay, now I’m going to talk about why I’ll miss Borders so much!

Over 5 years ago, I had a small lunch group of three or four members that would go to Borders at lunch.  We would browse the magazine section and I would occasionally check out the latest computer books (see I don’t hate technology).

After about 10 minutes, we would all settle over in the small Cafe and order soup and some times coffee.  We would discuss ideas covering financial investments and plans we had in the future, to ideas that we thought would be cool to have or invent.  It was a great time, and times remembered fondly… at least until the Borders store closed 2 years ago.

Even though we don’t go there anymore (since our employer moved to a larger building far away from that particular Borders store), I still had fond memories of the place whenever I would drive by.  Occasionally I would even stop in just to experience that same old comfy feeling, buying an occasional greeting card or financial (or computer) magazine while I was there.

It was an A+ experience that my kids won’t grow up to know.  Hopefully Barnes and Nobles can hold on, it’s similar although a bit more uppity.  My family could still blend in, although it doesn’t have that same friendly everybody fits in feeling that Borders had.

I’ll admit, I’m kind of worried that some of the quaintness in the world is going to be left behind by the Amazons, eBays, Netflixes and Apple itunes of the day.  Oh year there is still Walmart, but do you really go there for the aesthetics?  Do you get a warm comfy feeling when you get a pop for their vending machine in the vestibule?

So as Borders finally closes it last few remaining store doors, I node Goodbye to the store that held so many lunch memories for me with friends I hardly see anymore.

So tell me, have you bought at a store or establishment that you would like to have around for a while?  I do, that’s why I make sure I make sure I support my local stores and restaurants and my local drive-in, because the world would be a much more generic and bland place without such unique landmarks!

Goodbye Borders, Hats off to you!

MR

16 Responses to Bye Borders, I Will Miss You!

  1. I think people are only willing to pay so much of a premium on being able to touch and feel a book. I think amazon killed borders and rightly so. The last time I bought a book at borders, I paid the full cover price. (I was in a mall and treated myself). Then I looked on amazon just to see if I got ripped off. Yup, amazon price was 40% lower…plus it had a million book reviews online too which also has value. That’s not available at borders unless you’re lucky enough to get a nerdy bibliophile working there.

      • Perhaps, but if you lose all your cool establishments, all you have left are seedy bars and walmarts…

        I would hate be in a world where we just all sit at home forever ordering stuff online while we never get out and socialize… But perhaps my vision is too bleak. The pendulum will swing back eventually in some for or another hopefully.

        I guess I hate the idea of my kids not sharing some of the cool moments and memories that I spend there and at such places.

        At least they still have the local Drive-in where I live…

    • Excellent points. I have to admit, I’m somewhat of a hypocrite in this scenario… While I like the look of Borders and B&N, and would get Starbucks coffee and soup there, I didn’t really buy books there… I usually go eBay or Amazon too.

      I guess I’m part of the problem too.

      In the small personal picture, I save money, in the larger economy picture, I hurt america (as evident by all the people being laid off). Hopefully time will fix things somehow, but change isn’t always for the better, so who knows…

  2. Though I like to get a deal on everything I buy, I don’t mind paying a premium for a book if I get to browse the bookstore.

    Quite a sad news actually.

    • Yes, very. I do like to buy discounted books sometimes (at B&N especially). My wife collects books, so I hope the entire paper book industry doesn’t totally die.

      Mainly I like to hang out there when I was in my 20s…

      I wonder what it will be replaced with?

    • OMG, if the library near where I work at closed, I don’t think I could get half as much work done blogging as I now do. That lunch time break at the library is very productive for me (in fact it’s where I’m at now typing away…)

      Thanks, I really miss the memorys of friends that now work in different states and companies…

  3. B&N has Nook, which has been keeping them afloat. They’re also experimenting with their selection. AT my B&N half the real estate is dedicated to gifts, stationary, board games, etc.

    My local Borders was always full of people, they just never bought anything. People would go there to drink coffee, check out the books (only to go home and order on-line), and read magazines for free.

    • Yes, I would have been one of those types… I haven’t really been in our local Borders for years. As much as I liked Borders, I like Barnes and Noble much better, especially now that I fit in easily with the demographics…

      I still support local shops in my city, but mostly restaurants and coffee shops…

  4. Although I am very sad to see Borders go, I have always preferred B&N. (As my post states, I did shop at Borders though.) B&N was the first bookstore I ever shopped at that had a cafe and was nice and roomy. My husband and I could walk to it from our apartment went we first got married, and it was open until 11:00, which was great. In contrast, the only Borders around at that time was an old Waldenbooks, which really didn’t have the same ‘comforts’. They then built a giant, beautiful Borders near where my kids go to school, and I love that store. As it turns out, I don’t want to just buy a book and run, I like to browse and be comfortable. Maybe a sit a minute and try out a book before I make the investment. The one giant Borders is the only one I know of that is so comfortable.

    As was said above, the Nook is probably really helping B&N, and I think they have just done a better job changing with the times.

    • Waldenbooks was the first bookstore that I even went to, and I liked it until I saw B&N in a larger city. It looked way to fancy as we (my parents and I) drove by it, but I was impressed! I wanted them to stop, but they didn’t want to… too bad…

      In my area Borders finally can into existence and it was fantastic! It was the first bookstore that I went to that had a cafe. I think if B&N moved it first they would be my favorite, but they didn’t come until 5 years laster…

      At least B&N looks solid still (hopefully)

  5. I like Borders too. It’s always a good spot to go when you have some free time. It’s too bad they couldn’t stay open.
    We still have a local bookstore though so we can still go browse and have coffee. Powell bookstore is local and it takes up the whole city block. 🙂